Addressing Threats to Our Democracy Through Election Reform
Timi and John Sobrato prioritize democratic reform as vital in advancing all their philanthropic pursuits. They advocate for nonpartisan systemic reform for Congressional elections that allows all eligible voters the ability to participate in the primary process, creates more choice, and incentivizes increased accountability by politicians to their electorate instead of to their party.
In 2022, 83% of the U.S. House was elected by just 8% of Americans.
This reform changes the incentives for politicians so that keeping their jobs is no longer dependent on blind allegiance to their party bosses but rather depends on achieving results. Through strategic partnerships, the Sobratos are working to bring about a more inclusive and functional democracy. In addition, they vigorously support efforts aimed at politically activating working Americans to amplify their voices and reduce wealth inequity.
In response to concerns that partisan primaries disenfranchise millions of voters and hinder cooperation among leaders in addressing societal issues, the Sobratos advocate for a powerful combination of non-partisan primaries in which the five highest vote recipients advance to the general election and must receive the majority of the votes cast through the implementation of an instant runoff.
This change would expand participation in the early stages of elections, enabling millions more individuals, regardless of their party affiliation, to engage actively in the electoral process – a vital step forward for democracy. It would also eliminate the ability for candidates to win by appealing to a faction of the party rather than to the majority of voters which is what has led to the election of an increased number of highly ideological candidates who are unwilling to compromise and thus have gridlocked Congress.